Miami Dolphins Joe Philbin Likely Coaching His Last Two Games
By Brian Miller
It’s hard to say exactly what will happen at the end of the season but some in the South Florida media believe that Miami Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin is coaching his last two games for the Dolphins. Only Stephen Ross knows for sure what will happen at seasons end. He controls that end of the business. Today, after being eliminated from the playoffs…or as close to elimination without actually having it official…he may be ready to fire the coach but after another week he may not. Let’s face one real fact, it’s never easy to fire someone and it’s harder when that person’s character is what the organization needs.
This team however needs to win.
Following the game on Sunday I texted my brother a simple line. “Ready to fire Philbin yet?”. He likes Joe Philbin and thinks he should get one more year. I didn’t get a text back but a phone call instead. “You can not blame that loss on the head coach,” he said. Then gave me examples of dropped touchdown passes, blocked field goals, interceptions, and how those would have turned the game around. I understand that visual.
Unfortunately there are other things to consider here as well. For instance why was Dallas Thomas still playing in this game despite the fact he was again for the 3rd week in a row a turnstile? Why did Jason Fox not get a look to see if he could play better? He seemed to when Thomas was out a series with an injury. At least he didn’t play any worse.
The dropped touchdown pass was pathetic and Damien Williams will be the first to tell you that but my question is why was Williams in the game on that play? The team has a slew of offensive playmakers yet we are going to rely on a rookie running back to make that catch. I suppose that play design calls for more speed out of the back-field than Lamar Miller can give them.
A lot has been discussed about the teams sudden infatuation with the deep ball against New England. Hey it worked what do you know! My question is why now? Last week against Baltimore the Dolphins didn’t attempt a deep pass all game long and this week they open with a 50 yard pass to Mike Wallace? It feels as though this week Joe Philbin pulled some of the chains off the offense. That is a coaching decision and wether it is Philbin or Bill Lazor who has opted to not use the downfield throw should be answering for the lack of production.
Play on the field has been up and down all season. The Dolphins started out the last two weeks on fire in the first quarter and most of the first half but have fallen apart in the 2nd half. That is a preparation problem. If it’s conditioning then it is a coaching problem, if it’s tackling it’s a coaching problem, if it’s lack of drive, it’s a coaching problem. Guess what? It’s a coaching problem.
The players on this team deserve better. The fans deserve better and the owner deserves better. How is it that a 3-11 team like the New York Jets can play so hard for a coach they know is being fired at the end of the season and a 7-7 team with their playoff futures in their hands can’t win one of two games? Which team is better coached? The truth is the Jets have almost no talent on their roster. Not on offense nor on defense and that shows why they have a record like they do. Miami on the other hand has a better quarterback, better receivers, a better running back, better defensive edge rushers, better defensive tackles, better cornerbacks, and still they had to pull out a come from behind win three games ago. All things being unequal…it’s coaching.
For the Miami Dolphins it’s coaching. Pure and simple and sadly the Dolphins would have done well to fire Philbin last year. They had the reasons. Lets remember that Joe Philbin is supposed to be meticulous in the small details but he was completely blind of the locker room prior to the explosion of Martin vs. Incognito. It’s unacceptable for many fans and it should be unacceptable for Stephen Ross. In fact, if I were Ross today, I would highly consider firing him now and letting one of my coordinators finish the season. Give someone else a chance to show a little of what they might do. Of course that’s just me.